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Stephenville to share in carbon credits with Sharp Management Inc.

Mayor Tom Rose talks about the Limited Edition First Certified Carbon Credits award he received on behalf of the Town of Stephenville from Sharp Management Inc. relating to the town's Wastewater Treatment Facility Engineered Wetlands.
Mayor Tom Rose talks about the Limited Edition First Certified Carbon Credits award he received on behalf of the Town of Stephenville from Sharp Management Inc. relating to the town's Wastewater Treatment Facility Engineered Wetlands. - Frank Gale

The province’s first 50,000 carbon credits will soon be on the auction block and Mayor Tom Rose is proud that the Town of Stephenville will share in them.

The environmental firm Sharp Management quantified, verified and acquired certification for the credits through partnerships with the towns of Stephenville and Appleton-Glenwood to design and implement engineered wetlands to treat sewage wastewater.

The company agreed to accept all of the upfront costs and share the revenue with the towns if the certification was achieved, which has taken place.

A carbon credit is a certificate that allows a company, individual or country to produce and emit one tonne of carbon dioxide or other greenhouse gas.

Sharp Management celebrated its achievement Wednesday in St. John’s, and Rose was on hand for the event, accepting a Limited Edition First Certified Carbon Credits award that featured an aerial view of Stephenville’s Wastewater Treatment Facility Engineered Wetlands.

While it was a number of years in the making, Stephenville’s wastewater facility was commissioned in 2009-10.

This particular facility is the largest subsurface engineered wetland system providing secondary treatment in Canada.

Rose said while he was proud to accept the award, he wanted to recognize previous council members for their contribution to making this possible.

He singled out former mayor Cecil Stein for his contribution to making it become a reality, noting that having an engineer as mayor at the time was helpful in planning the facility, which was designed by Abydoz Environmental Inc.

Veteran council members Don Gibbon and Mike Tobin were quick to speak up and talk about the contributions of former mayor Tom O’Brien when it came to the wastewater facility.

Gibbon said O’Brien played a big part in the treatment facility and was invited to a national wastewater convention in Niagara Falls in 2009 to talk about the system, how well its installation went and how well it was working.

Tobin said while he was part of it as a councillor, Stein and O’Brien took the lead on it.

He said there is a milestone deadline coming up at the end of this month for this treatment system to be paid off. He added the Abydoz system is a good one and is working well for Stephenville, with about 98 per cent efficiency.

Rose said he is proud the Town of Stephenville has a self-sustainable way to manage wastewater and has transformed a brook running through the town that had raw sewage being dumped into it into a pristine salmon stream.

He said the treatment facility is green technology that offsets carbon emissions by utilizing a reed bed system. He said this system is the envy of many communities and with a deadline approaching for such facilities to be in place, Stephenville is well ahead of the game.

Stephenville Wastewater Treatment Facility Engineered Wetlands Facts:

Population – 7,800

Flow Rate – 4,500 cubic metres per day

Wetland Size – 22,000 square metres

Limited Edition First Certified Carbon Credits

Largest subsurface engineered wetland system providing secondary treatment in Canada.

Subsurface flow ensures wetland does not attract waterfowl or wildlife that could affect airport operations.

Total cost – approximately $10 million

Source: Sharp Management Inc.

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